While the rest of the world may still be swooning over Bon Iver’s glitch-folk record 22, A Million, that came out this Friday (and is quite good!), Matt Kivel is quietly releasing his own 26-track folk opus.
The album, Fires on the Plain, is his second release of the year and follows up Janus, which came out in March. If that album was an ode to the everyday, Fires on the Plain is the LA-based folk rocker’s exploration of the majestic; each and every track sweeps and howls through rumbling acoustic existentialism, taunt string arrangements and peaceful field recordings.
A pair of tracks in the middle bear folk-rock royalty features — Bonnie “Prince” Billy shows up on “Forgiveness” and Robin Pecknold of Fleet Foxes on “Permanence” — but neither eclipse Kivel when they appear. He holds his own against the greats, because frankly, that’s the caliber of his work. Even if the needed exposure to be a successful musician in the internet era hasn’t caught up with him yet, Kivel is steadily rising, and this album is proof of his ascent.
Today we’re premiering the video for the former track, “Forgiveness,” a slightly bizarre clip that juxtaposes women with skeleton-painted faces and beautiful, peaceful natural landscapes. Watch it above.